I have been in this world for very nearly three quarters of a century and never have I known as much political chicanery as seems to be taking place in Britain at the moment. Cartoon Cameron started it all by calling for a referendum on Brexit, a referendum that was initially supported by the majority of MPs.
During the weeks leading up to the vote, there was skulduggery on both sides but leave won handsomely so the nastiness tilted over to the remain side. This eventually resulted in the downfall of Theresa Maybe who was/still is probably the most inept prime minister this country has known. I had high hopes for the lady when she was made prime minister, but she proved herself to be as useless as Canaan Banana was in the early days of Zimbabwe.
A number of people on the remain side are still campaigning for the referendum to be held again, but that is surely a complete nonsense. We would probably get the same result and then what? Vote again perhaps and go on voting till the leavers get fed up and go home?
With this new debate of rerunning the referendum, Jeremy Corbyn’s and thereby Labour’s stance has been ambivalent. Corbyn obviously doesn’t want a rerun, but he is being sorely pressured. Then a few days ago, we read in The Times that he is ‘too frail’ to be prime minister. Indeed the suggestion was that he is in the early stages of dementia. This a man who is teetotal, vegetarian and runs five kilometres almost every day? I have no time for Corbyn and think he would be even more of a dangerous disaster than Mrs Maybe but I don’t regard him as in any way frail. In fact he seems dangerously healthy.
As he says himself, it should be ‘very concerning to all of us’ that civil servants ‘should be briefing a newspaper against a prospective government. He is demanding an investigation into which senior civil servants are spreading fictitious information to the Press.
Well, that will get us nowhere: good journalists — and Rachel Sylvester who wrote the piece is one such, won’t on any account reveal their sources and I can’t imagine any of those responsible confessing their indiscretion.
To my cynical mind, the story has to be part of yet another Machiavellian plot by Labour politicians who want the party to campaign against Brexit in a second referendum. They quite correctly see Corbyn and his close circle as the chief obstacle to their objective. To me this seems obvious, particularly as Sylvester is a Labour-supporting columnist and she has made her views on the matter clear in the past.
In April The Times published a column by her — under the headline ‘Brexit exposes Corbyn’s double standards’ — vehemently critical of his reluctance to switch the party to an anti-Brexit stance: ‘On Brexit, the most important issue of the day, the leader has repeatedly refused to bow to the will of the vast majority of party members to campaign for another referendum on any deal.’
What makes the nature of the plot all the more apparent is that although Saturday’s front-page story was headlined ‘Corbyn too frail to be PM, fears Civil Service‘, the most damaging allegations of his alleged physical and mental decline came from his so-called colleagues in the Shadow Cabinet.
They are those who want the party to campaign to block any form of Brexit, despite the fact that they were all elected on a manifesto to honour the result of the 2016 referendum. Now one of them (unnamed in the piece) is quoted as saying Jeremy ‘can barely hold his head up’; another that he is ‘old . . . exhausted’; and yet another that ‘he doesn’t seem all there sometimes’. But, actually, it’s not the fact that he has allegedly lost his marbles that most bothers them. It’s the fact that he is (they say) in the grip of a small group who are furiously opposed to the party coming out for a second referendum to overturn the result of the first one.
Surely we have all had more than enough of this now. Even the Queen is quoted today as saying that politicians must listen to the people and if Queenie ventures into public discourse on the matter, we should all listen – and so should our elected MPs.
I wonder if those put forward by Nigel Farage as prospective candidates for his Brexit Party will be any better?